How do you check for your car’s battery health? Having the best battery tester at hand can be very useful in preventing road-side mishaps due to battery failure.
The ideal car battery tester should accurately diagnose the remaining charge-carrying capacity of the battery and digitally show the current charge level. It should also be portable.
Battery Tester Reviews
INNOVA 3721 Battery and Charging System Monitor
The INNOVA battery monitor is very easy and safe to use. Simply plug it into your car’s cigarette lighter, and the LCD display will show the readout. It is only compatible with negative ground vehicles.
Amprobe BAT-200 Battery Tester
The Amprobe Bat-200 battery tester is very straightforward and doesn’t require batteries to work. It has an analog display with three color-coded indicators: green for “good”, yellow for “low”, and red for “recharge/replace”.
Amprobe BAT-250 Battery Tester
An updated version of its BAT-200 predecessor, this battery tester still has an Analog display but at a better viewing angle. Three color indicators are still used: red for “REPLACE”, yellow for “LOW”, and green for “GOOD”.
TOOGOO(R)LCD Cigarette Lighter Voltage Digital Panel Meter
This battery tester can monitor DC 12V or DC 24V cars. Simply plug it in the cigarette lighter, and it’s good to go. The LCD is difficult to see under direct sunlightand there is no backlight.
DROK®Car Cigarette Lighter Plug Voltmeter
The DROK Car cigarette lighter plug is a dual-function device. It is a 12V/24V voltage monitor with a blue LED display. It’s also a USB charger compatible with most 2.1A smartphones, tablets and cameras.
Etekcity MSR-R500 Digital Multimeter
The Etekcity MSR-R500 Digital Multimeter is great for testing not only car batteries but also household appliances. It has a backlit LCD display, a wrap-around safety rubber sleeve, and retractable stand for hands-free testing.
Cartman 6/12V Car Battery Load Tester
This Cartman car battery load testeris a traditional one. It comes with battery clamps, a rocker switch, and a needle-point indicator with color-coded status curve encased in clear, durable plastic.
Ancel Bst200 100-1100 Cold Cranking Amps Portable
The Ancel Bst200 is ideal for novices in car maintenance. It’s highly accurate and displays results after three seconds. It is also an OBD-II reader, meaning it will show via code if your vehicle has an engine problem.
Foxwell Bt705 Car Battery Tester
The Foxwell Bt705 Car Battery Tester comes fully-equipped with dual clamps, user manual, its own carrying case, and built-in multi-language system.It can’t test 6V batteries; it can only analyze 12V or 24V.
D-FantiX Digital Battery Tester
The user-friendly D-FantiX battery tester has a no-fuss display that shows the reading of up to 9V. You can use it to test most types of batteries.It uses AA battery for its power.
Why Buy a Battery Tester?
Battery testers are handy devices that every household needs to have. They allow you to test batteries to see if they need to be replaced.
If you have gadgets in your home that need to work all the time, a battery tester is essential. Here are some of the benefits you can get:
You can tell when you need to change batteries. This is important because you don’t want the gadget to stop working when you need it the most.
Battery testers also test rechargeable batteries, thus, you’ll know when their charge is already low and you have to recharge them to keep your gadgets operating.
Having a charged battery all the time is particularly vital for security devices, such as smoke alarms. If they stop working, you compromise your safety.
You can save money. With a battery tester you can check exactly when you need to change batteries. Thus, you don’t have to change these prematurely.
Types of Battery Testers
There are two main types of battery tester – analogue and digital, but both types work by testing the amount of power remaining in the battery.
Both battery tester types look at the voltage output of a battery to tell if it is still usable or if it needs to be replaced.
The main difference between the two is that the analogue battery tester has a dial gauge with a needle that points to the power level.
A digital battery tester has an LCD screen, on the other hand, with bars indicating power level. Thus, digital testers need a battery to power them.
An analogue battery tester also works slightly different in that it measures batteries as if they were “under load”, i.e. if they were being used.
Digital testers don’t use the same testing method, which makes them slightly less accurate than analogue testers. However, they still provide you with reliable readings.
How to Choose a Battery Tester
To ensure that a battery tester is useful to you, it has to have the right set of features. Here is what you need to look for:
It should test the whole range of disposable and rechargeable batteries. It should work with everything from AA and AAA to button batteries.
It should indicate power levels. The tester should show if battery power is still okay, if it is already low and if it needs to be changed/recharged.
The tester should be easy to read. Most battery testers have scales that indicate the level of battery power. Lower-end devices may simply use indicator lights.
Other features. If you use mainly rechargeable batteries for instance, you may want to buy a charger-tester combo device, which also has discharge and refresh functions.
Another common battery tester combo are organizers with compartments that allow you to keep extra batteries. This can be useful if you have a lot of spares.
How Battery Testers Work
Every battery has a voltage reading; for instance, a regular AA alkaline battery has a 1.5 voltage. If the battery falls below this, you need to replace it.
To start testing the battery, it is placed between two slots in the tester. Testers have different types of slots to accommodate various battery sizes.
During the testing process, the two poles of the battery complete a circuit. Voltage and current from the battery are released, generating electricity that flows around the circuit.
The more current and voltage there is, the greater the amount of electromagnetic waves produced. These waves are tested to determine the amount of power remaining.
An analogue battery tester includes an electromagnet. The electromagnetic waves generated by the circuit act against the electromagnet’s charge. This causes the needle on the gauge to move.
The farther the needle moves, the more charge remains. However, the scale does not indicate actual power levels but whether the battery is still usable or not.